Is Utopian Thinking Dead?

Does the concept of utopia represent an unattainable ideal – or the kind of idealistic ambition that can promote change in the real world?  Utopian thinking seems to have been pushed from the domain of politics to the world of technology – with visions of the future on how society and the economy might be organised substituted by excitement over innovations in consumer products.  Should we revive blue-sky thinking in the political realm – or is that simply a distraction from politics on the ground, in the real world?

This Battle of Ideas debate was filmed by WORLDbytes volunteers.  The speakers are Dr Yaron Brook, executive director, Ayn Rand Institute; Der Eliane Glaser, writer, lecturer and radio producer; Dr Norman Lewis, director (innovation) at PwC; Karl Sharro, architect and writer; Kirsty Styles, talent and skills programme lead at Tech North.  The chair is David Bowden, associate fellow, Institute of Ideas.